A Nobel Peace Prize for Greta Thunberg? Bookmakers Believe in it, Experts Sceptical

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A Nobel Peace Prize for Greta Thunberg? Bookmakers Believe in it, Experts Sceptical 1

At bookmakers the 16-year-old, Greta Thunberg is a favourite. Nobel Peace Prize specialists are more sceptical.

Greta Thunberg wearing the laurels of peace? The young Swedish spokesperson for the fight against climate change is the bookmaker’s favourite for the Nobel Peace Prize, but the experts are wary.

Already recognized by the “Right Livelihood Nobel” and an Amnesty International Award, the 16-year-old girl holds the rope at online betting sites before being awarded the most prestigious of all the rewards Friday in Oslo. At Ladbrokes, his rating dropped to 1.50.

“It would bring recognition to the movement”

She herself would be open to this idea … “This would bring recognition and strength to the movement and make it even more general,” she told Swiss Radio and Television (RTS).

From her “school strike”, alone in front of the Swedish Parliament to gatherings in which millions of young people around the world now participate, the teenager with long braids has, within a year, caused electroshock in public opinion on the climate issue.


Read also: Greta Thunberg at the UN: “How dare you? You stole my dreams and my childhood! “

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on 1 July 2019 in Parliament, Addis Ababa.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on 1 July 2019 in Parliament, Addis Ababa. (© AFP / Archives / Michael TEWELDE)

At the end of September, it marked the spirits by apostrophizing the leaders of the planet in a corrosive intervention in New York: “How dare you? You stole my dreams and my childhood, “she said after crossing the Atlantic on a sailboat.

An awakening of consciousness likely to earn her the Nobel? “Extremely unlikely,” says the director of the Oslo Peace Research Institute (Prio), Henrik Urdal.

Two reasons for this, according to him: a link between climate change and armed conflict that remains to be scientifically established and the age, still very tender, of the girl, for whom the reward could quickly turn into a burden.

“The only way to make that happen would be to share the prize (with someone else, ed) like Malala,” the 2014 Pakistani teenager, awarded at the age of 17, along with Indian Kailash Satyarthi, says Urdal.

“I would be very surprised”

“Of course, she is an international star, struggling with Donald Trump, and she has shone the light on climate change better than anyone else (but), what works against her is that she is only 16 years old. Says historian Asle Sveen, a Nobel specialist. “I would be very surprised.”

Even if such a prize would probably tick her parents, “Greta” is “a serious candidate,” said Dan Smith, the director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri).

“What she has done in the past year is extraordinary,” he told AFPTV .

“Climate change is a problem that is closely linked to security and peace.”

Greta Thunberg aboard the Malizia II departs the port of Plymouth on 14 August 2019 in the United Kingdom.
Greta Thunberg aboard the Malizia II departs the port of Plymouth on 14 August 2019 in the United Kingdom. (© AFP / Ben STANSALL)

Nose to fake news?

Artisan of the reconciliation of his country with Eritrea, the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is one of the favourites of the experts.

“Abiy Ahmed would be a good candidate, his mandate having had peaceful effects in the country, less authoritarian, and in the region,” notes the Swedish professor Peter Wallensteen, a specialist in international issues.

Any prognosis is a challenge because, nominations submitted to the Norwegian Nobel Committee, we know only the number -301 this year, the names have not been revealed.

For those who can play the riddle game, the committee could focus on freedom of information at a time when it is under enormous pressure in authoritarian regimes but also in Western democracies. .

“In the era of” fake news “, the excess of information (…) and the lack of transparency, of responsibility in many political processes, I hope that this is something that the committee would consider very seriously Says Urdal.

Media advocacy groups such as Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) are discussed.

Other names circulating at a time when migration crises are still at the forefront of the scene: those of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its leader, Filippo Grandi, or the organization SOS Mediterranean.

Ladbrokes has also opened bets on alleged fakes more or less fanciful: the American football star Megan Rapinoe rubs shoulders with his political bogeyman, Donald Trump, offered to the coast with the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The answer will come on Friday at 11am at the Nobel Institute in Oslo.

Last year, the prize – a gold medal, a diploma and a sum of nine million Swedish kroner (about 830,000 euros) – rewarded two champions of the fight against sexual violence, the Congolese gynaecologist Denis Mukwege and Yazidie Nadia Murad.

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